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Pakistan to engage Chinese experts to curb smog

LAHORE: The Punjab government has decided to hire services of Chinese experts to curb prevailing situation of smog across the province.

Provincial Environment Minister Bilal Afzal met Chinese Consul General Zhao Shirin in his office here on Friday. In the meeting, issues of utilizing the services of environmental experts from China were discussed. Provincial Minister Bilal Afzal said that Punjab Chief Minister is continuing serious efforts for a lasting solution to smog, we need the cooperation of the Chinese government to control smog, Lahore’s air quality index had reached to an alarming rate of around 400.
In this case, the only short-term solution is artificial rain. The Punjab government is keen to establish close links between Chinese universities and experts from environmental institutions, he said.
The smog will end in the next one month, but we are looking for a permanent solution to this problem and in the coming years, he said adding to make things easier for the government, 30 percent of the current smog intensity in Lahore is due to winds blowing from India while 70 percent is due to local transport, industries and dust.
The Chinese Consul General said that the steps taken by the Chief Minister of Punjab to combat smog are commendable, and our government is ready to provide technical and technical support for the immediate solution of smog in Punjab. will visit.
The Chinese Consul General proposed the construction of an Air Purification Tower in Lahore. Air Purification Tower will help in controlling air pollution.
Meanwhile the blanket of the smog got more thick and deepened again in the provincial metropolis as the situation has started intensifying again after reducing the impact of rain again.
The educational institutions opened last Monday after four holidays. The city recorded a minimum temperature of 16 and a maximum of 26 degrees Celsius.
According to MET office sources, there is no chance of rain in the city yet during the ongoing week.
Air Quality Index of Lahore College for Women University area here was recorded as 186-to 252 on Friday, while Air Quality Index of Cantt. area was recorded as 205.
The district administration sources told APP that actions are being taken against smog-emitting vehicles and factories to prevent smog. Water is being sprinkled on the highways of the city with the help of tankers.
In this connection medical experts say that increasing air pollution in the city can prove dangerous for children, elderly and people suffering from lung and heart diseases. They urged the citizens to ensure use of masks and glasses while going out of homes.
They said the environment has serious effects on health in a variety of ways, by significantly impacting human health in two ways, either directly by exposing people to harmful carbon-agents, or indirectly, by disrupting life-sustaining ecosystems.
Smog and environmental hazards are directly posing threats to human health and well-being and this is rapidly emerging as a serious health concern in the Punjab capital, they added.
The Environment Protection Department (EPA) Director Naseem-ur-Rehman Shah and City District Government Lahore (CDGL) sources said that they are struggling hard to effectively curb the smog.
They added that the mushrooming of small unplanned industrial units are directly responsible for the situation, however heavy fines are being imposed on them for producing the toxic level of chemicals in the air, that is worsening the smog across the city.
It is worth mentioning here that on Monday, the Lahore High Court ordered closure of all schools and colleges in Punjab on Saturday, November 18 (tomorrow), to curb smog, as it also recommended a two-day work from home for employers.
Meanwhile, the Punjab government has planned to induce artificial rain in Lahore on November 28 amid deteriorating smog and air quality.
The government took the decision to combat the increasing smog in the city. The Punjab caretaker chief minister chaired a special meeting in this regard.
It was decided in the meeting that the artificial rain will be induced in the city on Nov 28 in order to control the increasing smog.